Author Topic: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)  (Read 78620 times)

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facehugger

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Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« on: April 06, 2007, 01:41:35 PM »
a sexy sexy man, with sexy sexy music

string quartets rule. all of them. especially the third.

discuss him here

 :)
« Last Edit: July 06, 2007, 06:36:07 AM by bhodges »

Mark G. Simon

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2007, 04:53:30 AM »
The ultimate Contrasts recording is here:



The cover says "Violin works", but clarinetist Ricardo Morales is so incredibly HOT in Contrasts, this is what really makes the disc.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2007, 04:57:03 AM by Mark G. Simon »

Offline Guido

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2007, 02:57:36 AM »
The string quartets are all brilliant of course. I'm very fond of the concertos too (especially the viola concerto, even if it is the weakest...), and the two rhapsodies for violin and orchestra (which are even better on the cello!).
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karlhenning

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2007, 09:22:02 AM »
. . . and the two rhapsodies for violin and orchestra (which are even better on the cello!).

Heterodoxy!!  8)

Actually, I think I've got one of the 'cello rhapsodies' on disc . . . .

pjme

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2007, 09:48:04 AM »
I never get tired of Bela Bartok. From the early Richard Strauss / Debussy inspired works to the third pianoconcerto and violaconcerto: an intelligent, serious, masterly oeuvre.

The Cantata Profana can move me very deeply.

String quartet nr 4 is another challenging and always gripping work. Facehugger, I'll see if I can find on Youtube Rosas choreography of this quartet. it was entirely shot in Ghent University's Booktower - a late (1933) work of Henry Van de Velde.


From Rosas website :

In 1986 De Keersmaeker presented us with Bartók / Aantekeningen. It was her first piece to be based on a score by one of the great masters of modern classical music. Bela Bartók’s Fourth String Quartet provided the basis for the entire production, both structurally and emotionally. The composition consists of five parts whose arrangement one might define thus: A B C B_ A_, as if the mid-section C were enclosed by a large circle (A A_) and a smaller one (B B_). The performance adopts this structure too, but in addition to the choreography based on Bartók’s music, there are also De Keersmaeker’s aantekeningen (annotations). They comprise movements carried out in silence, additions in the form of text (from Peter Weiss’ Marat/Sade and Georg Büchner’s Lenz), fragments of film of children playing and car crashes, and miscellaneous sound material (Bulgarian folk singing, speeches by Lenin, Russian revolutionary songs, etc.). These heterogeneous elements are bound together by an ingenious structure so that the performance by no means appears as an assembly of separate fragments.

The four dancers act like naughty little girls; while at the same time there is an interplay as between chamber musicians in a string quartet. The parts are played by Fumiyo Ikeda, Nadine Ganase, Roxane Huilmand and, in alternation, Johanne Saunier and Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker. So, in this piece the choreographer takes a step back from her own work for the first time, enabling her to view it from the outside. The emotions that dominate the performance fluctuate between dissonance (also a major theme in Bartók’s music) and aggression on the one hand and melancholy and purity on the other. And yet it comes across as significantly less heavy than Elena’s Aria, mainly because the whole piece is partly informed by a girlish humour and sensuality.


Offline MishaK

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #5 on: April 12, 2007, 09:48:46 AM »
Have you guys seen the "Beyond the Score" Miraculous Mandarin presentation video from the CSO website?

Offline Josquin des Prez

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #6 on: April 12, 2007, 03:56:31 PM »
Everything Bartok wrote in his mature years is a masterpiece. He got a bit of a rough start though. I was listening to his early violin sonata in e minor (wrote when he was 22), and while it's a nicely crafted romantic piece (with a nice fugue tuck in the middle of it) it has many rough edges and is far from being a master work. It doesn't even remotely compare to Enescu's Octet (wrote at the age of 19. Both composers were born in the same year), yet, if i had to chose between the two i'd say Bartok definitely grew to be the greater master. Prodigies never seem to be all that after all (with the exception of Mozart)...
« Last Edit: April 12, 2007, 04:01:10 PM by Josquin des Prez »

Offline Brewski

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #7 on: July 06, 2007, 06:38:11 AM »
Have you guys seen the "Beyond the Score" Miraculous Mandarin presentation video from the CSO website?

I'm watching this right now -- terrific.  Thanks for posting this, since I would never have found it (most likely), and The Miraculous Mandarin is one of my alltime favorite works. 

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Offline quintett op.57

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #8 on: July 07, 2007, 12:16:11 AM »
What do you think about the Juilliard quartet box set?

Offline johnshade

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #9 on: July 07, 2007, 03:08:24 AM »
~
I have received hours of great pleasure and delight from Bartok's unique music since the 1950s. I have many recordings of practically all of his recorded works.

My favorites, I believe, are from Bartok's greatest period: Music for strings, percussion and celesta (Bernstein, Reiner), Sonata from 2 pianos and percussion ( Argerich, Ashkenazy) , and the 5th String Quarter (Emerson). These are probably well-liked by most Bartok aficionados.

« Last Edit: July 07, 2007, 03:29:37 AM by johnshade »
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Offline Bonehelm

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2007, 12:46:22 PM »
The Emersons' Bartok set is the best I've ever heard. And that's what a lot of critics say, too.

Offline Todd

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #11 on: July 08, 2007, 12:50:18 PM »
What do you think about the Juilliard quartet box set?


Which set?  They've recorded it three times.  I have the second and third, and the second one is superior in most regards, but I've heard the Fourth from the first cycle, and that may be the one to get.  I should probably revisit my to-buy list.

Overall, for the quartets, I prefer the Vegh stereo cycle (their mono cycle is also excellent), and the Takacs Quartet's second recording on Decca (haven't heard the earlier Hungaroton cycle yet).   
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Offline scottscheule

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2007, 09:54:52 AM »
Listening to the Concerto for Orchestra now, and I'm struck by how talented the man's orchestration was--though I seldom hear his orchestration skills referred to (certainly not as often as Ravel's or Strauss's).

karlhenning

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #13 on: August 24, 2007, 10:27:56 AM »
I've always loved the CfO, Scott!

Offline scottscheule

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #14 on: August 24, 2007, 10:56:14 AM »
Heh, I remember first buying this album, when I wanted to listen to avant-garde music just to be cool.  The Concerto mystified me--I always skipped to the Fourth Movement and then turned it off. 

But many a listening has made it one of my favorite pieces.

We were recently talking about orchestration on some thread, and somebody posted Stravinsky saying that the best orchestration is such that you don't even think about it as orchestration.  I get that feeling from Bartok's orchestral work--the effect is rather like the orchestra being a single instrument, producing all those myriad sounds--effortlessly.

Online Szykneij

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #15 on: August 24, 2007, 10:57:59 AM »
The cover says "Violin works", but clarinetist Ricardo Morales is so incredibly HOT in Contrasts, this is what really makes the disc.

I've recently been listening to some early Bartok and I've just discovered his Suite No. 2, Op. 4 which has a great bass clarinet solo in the third movement. The recording I have is by the Budapest Philharmonic playing the revised 1943 version. I'd like to pick up a recording of the original 1907 arrangement.
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Offline Dancing Divertimentian

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #16 on: October 24, 2008, 10:14:23 PM »
Such an explosive work, the violin sonata - a fountain of ideas and color!

It's a work that seems to play to the strengths of Argerich. She's naturally volatile and plays with utter abandon here - yet never missteps even once. Harnessed power.

Kremer historically is more tempered, but here he's obviously swept up in the emotion of the moment and plunges head-first into the fracas.

It all adds up to spiky Bartok goodness.




Veit Bach-a baker who found his greatest pleasure in a little cittern which he took with him even into the mill and played while the grinding was going on. In this way he had a chance to have the rhythm drilled into him. And this was the beginning of a musical inclination in his descendants. JS Bach

Offline Dancing Divertimentian

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #17 on: October 26, 2008, 05:37:22 PM »
Such an explosive work, the violin sonata...

I should clarify: that's violin sonata No.1.


Veit Bach-a baker who found his greatest pleasure in a little cittern which he took with him even into the mill and played while the grinding was going on. In this way he had a chance to have the rhythm drilled into him. And this was the beginning of a musical inclination in his descendants. JS Bach

karlhenning

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #18 on: October 27, 2008, 03:16:06 AM »
I should clarify: that's violin sonata No.1.

Yes, I'm still getting to differentiation between the two violin concerti, and the two violin sonatas . . . .

Offline tjguitar

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Re: Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
« Reply #19 on: October 27, 2008, 04:30:53 PM »
Good to see a Bartok thread.  I saw Salonen's recording of The Concerto for Orchestra the other day?  Is it a good one?